How to Combat Murphy’s Law in IT

In life, things go wrong all the time. No matter how perfectly things come together, there’s always room for error and unexpected surprises. The concept that “anything that can go wrong will go wrong” is known as Murphy’s law. It’s especially true with the IT you rely on – which is why you need to consider creating a business backup plan.

On a daily basis, things go wrong with varying levels of repercussions. For example, your old pen may run out of ink when you’re writing something important down.

That’s fairly annoying.

It’s also possible that you’re late for a performance review with the head of your department, and you want to do your best to impress them. On the way there, you spill your morning coffee on your shirt. You end up going back to your house to change, which makes you miss the meeting completely.

That’s a problem. That’s Murphy for you.

The Business Backup Plan

When Murphy’s law applies to your day-to-day life, it’s one thing. But when it applies to your business, it’s a whole other ordeal. In truth, it’s absolutely impossible to be protected from every single error and bit of bad luck that comes your way.

So what’s the answer to stopping Murphy’s law from actually hurting your business?

In short, it’s a healthy mix of preparation and foresight. You can’t really predict that you’re going to get coffee spilled on your shirt, but you can have a spare shirt ready to go in the back seat in case accidents happen.

In business, the same argument applies on a much larger scale. If a ransomware attack manages to slip through your network security, you must be prepared ahead of time to deal with the incoming threat and resulting damage. Or, if a storm knocks out your power, you must have a solution ready to get you back up and running.

Having a backup and disaster recovery plan is extremely important. It’s what separates a mild annoyance from a potentially business-crippling blow.

Because Murphy can show up anywhere, there are multiple reasons you should always be prepared with a business backup plan at all times.

1. Human Error

You can’t ever really control what people do. There are lots of factors involved in human actions, such as level of training, emotional levels, stress, and even physical fatigue.

In other words, you can’t rely on people doing the same exact thing perfectly every single day. From 20 years of collecting incident data, Uptime Institute has determined that human error (i.e., bad operations) is responsible for approximately 70% of all data center incidents.

After all, we’re only human.

So when someone accidentally cuts the wrong wire while doing routine electrical maintenance work, resulting in lost power to the office, you’ve got to be prepared.

2. Customer Satisfaction

It’s not a secret that modern consumers demand constant uptime and availability.

Think of it this way – when you order food, you want food now. You’re not going to wait for a closed restaurant to open. Instead, you’ll choose another open one that offers the same general type of food.

When your business is struck by Murphy’s law, you’ll suffer from downtime to some degree. It may be as little as minutes, but it may be as much as days or weeks. Regardless, the time that you’re down is the time that your customers can’t reach you.

That means completely missing out on prospects, service interruptions, damaged reputation, and even compromised relationships with current prospects.

3. Downtime

It’s not just about reputational damage. The act of downtime also severely damages your organization’s operations. On average, small companies lost over $100,000 per ransomware incident due to downtime.

The cost of downtime is steep. To calculate downtime costs, you’ve got to add together the following:

  • Lost potential clients
  • Lost money on lack of employee output
  • Lost potential ROI of actions of employees
  • Lost future business due to reputational damage that comes with downtime

How to Get Started

To be ready for Murphy’s law, you’ve got to start considering the proper level of preparation for your company. That includes creating a backup and disaster recovery plan – and that starts with understanding the different threats that can affect your business.

Your first step should be to identify exactly how your business operates and what technology drives it.

If your servers are the core of your business, you can start by creating backups for them. Or, if your concerns are related to stoppages in productivity, you can consider switching to cloud-based productivity applications.

If it’s a new challenge for your team, get the ball rolling by reaching out to technology providers with experience in creating business backup plans. You can always reach out to us to chat about creating a backup plan that makes sense for your specific organization.